The Stranger he Turned Into

By Monica Bakre

‘Woh Ajnabi…’ goes a catchy song.


I wish to narrate how sometimes people turn into total ‘Ajnabis’ (strangers); you can’t recognise them in a different ‘avataar’. We had a male staff member (admin.), about 55 years of age, who was not known for his ‘sweetness of tongue ‘. Snapping, scolding, shouting came more naturally to him, than it did to lesser mortals like us.

I tried hard to empathise, but he always left at least one person blistering with his words about thrice a week (and that, in a good one!). And so, there was this one morning, I dashed into my work place, peeping swiftly into the mirror in the hallway thus proving my die-hard female vanity! Now, embedded in the opposite wall, was a medium sized aquarium. As I was getting to dash away, I heard a small noise near the aquarium.

‘Eeee….EEEE…. (Chuckle)…OOOOOOO ….E-E-E-E….e-e-e-e….’

BURSTING with curiosity, I looked.

Guess what?

Mr. 55, peering into the aquarium, fussing over the fishes of different sizes, colors, some even florescent, he looked ever so cute, lost in his world. His age, unpleasant demeanor had all vanished as he cooed to the fish. He had brought along a long, plump earthworm which he was dangling inside the aquarium from the top and was actually calling out to the fish to come and eat it.

Now, how much cuter can this get?

I cannot put my finger on what emotion I felt at that point, but I did feel warmth in my heart which remains with me yet.

*** Next time anyone acts unpleasant, could we check if we are drawing the unpleasant aspect of his/her nature? Is there something we could do to extract the pleasant part? It is not impossible. ***

About the Author: Monica Bakre is a qualified counselor/psychologist, with interest in reading, writing, cooking, music and pets. She considers herself most of all an observant, absorbing, thinking, speculating and sensitive individual.

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